Recent Press Releases

Thune Comments on Senate-Passed Economic Recovery Package

--Measure Includes Important Wind Production Tax Credit Extension--

October 1, 2008

Washington, D.C. —  Senator John Thune made the following comments tonight after the Senate passed (74 -25) the Economic Recovery Package:

"It would have been easy to do the `politically popular' thing and vote against this bill, but for me it would not have been the responsible thing to do. I'm sure those who voted against this package have their reasons, but the sober facts are that without intervention, our credit markets will freeze, our economy will grind to a halt, and the impact will be severe and felt by every South Dakotan.

"To be clear, this legislation is not intended to bail out Wall Street, but rather insulate main streets across South Dakota and the country. I am frustrated that the government is being forced into this position, but the authority this bill provides is temporary. It also ensures strong oversight and strong taxpayer protections and it prevents Wall Street executives from walking away from their failed companies with golden parachutes.

"This is not money we are just throwing away, we are investing this money in assets that will later be sold, which means the government potentially stands to make a good portion, if not all of it back in the long run, while calming the uncertain financial waters we are now battling.

"Over the past week, I have heard from all sectors of South Dakota's economy urging me to support a financial stabilization bill. I have received phone calls, email and statements from the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce, the South Dakota Association of Healthcare Organizations, AARP, Otter Tail Power Company, Basin Electric, NorthWestern Energy, the South Dakota Homebuilders, South Dakota Corn Growers Association, South Dakota Farm Bureau, the South Dakota Bankers Association, the Independent Community Bankers of South Dakota, the South Dakota Investment Council, South Dakota Soybean Association, and many other organizations who voiced their support for this legislation because of their concern about the impact on their members and the South Dakota economy."


The Economic Recovery Package also included the widely supported tax extenders package, which passed the Senate last Monday by a 93-2 vote -- with several provisions that are critically important for South Dakota.

The tax extenders package includes a much needed extension of the production tax credit for wind energy through 2009.

"This is vital step to ensure sustained development of wind energy production in South Dakota and across the nation," said Thune. "I could not in good conscience vote against something that is so good for South Dakota and the future of renewable energy in this country. The bipartisan tax package enjoys the support of over 750 groups."

The tax package also includes a provision creating $800 million in new Clean Renewable Energy Bonds (CREBs) to finance new renewable energy development facilities which include wind farms and bio-refineries. It also includes incentives specifically targeted at increasing cellulosic ethanol production and extends the $1 per gallon biodiesel tax credit through 2009, as well as tax credits for teachers and the ability for South Dakotans to deduct sales taxes from their Federal Income Taxes, funding for various school districts across the state and a one year fix to ensure that the Alternative Minimum Tax doesn't impact over 24 million middle class families across the country.



2. Air Conditioning Contractors of America
3. Air Transport Association of America
4. Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers
5. Aluminum Association
6. American Apparel and Footwear Association
7. American Bankers Association
8. American Boiler Manufacturers Association
9. American Business Conference
10. American Chemistry Council
11. American Concrete Pressure Pipe Association
12. American Council of Life Insurers
13. American Electronics Association
14. American Electric Power
15. American Financial Services Association
16. American Forest & Paper Association
17. American Hotel & Lodging Association
18. American Institute of Architects
19. American Land Rights Association
20. American Land Title Association
21. American Meat Institute
22. American Rental Association
23. American Resort Development
24. American Society of Appraisers
25. American Trucker Association
26. Americans for Prosperity
27. Appraisal Institute
28. Associated Builders and Contractors
29. Associated Equipment Distributors
30. Associated General Contractors
31. Association for Manufacturing Technology
32. Association of American Railroads
33. Association of Equipment Manufacturers
34. Association of International Automobile Manufacturers
35. Business Council for Sustainable Energy
36. Building Owners and Managers Association, International
37. Business Roundtable
38. California Chamber of Commerce
39. Consumer Bankers Association
40. Consumer Mortgage Association
41. Consumer Mortgage Coalition
42. CTIA - the Wireless Coalition
43. Duke Energy
44. Edison Electric Institute
45. Equipment Leasing and Finance Association
46. Farm Bureau
47. Financial Services Forum
48. Financial Services Roundtable
49. Food Marketing Institute
50. Ford
51. Heritage Foundation
52. Housing Policy Council
53. Independent Community Bankers of America
54. Independent Electrical Contractors
55. Independent Petroleum Association of America
56. Information Technology Industry Council
57. International Council of Shopping Centers
58. International Dairy Foods Association
59. International Franchise Association
60. International Paper
61. Investment Company Institute
62. Manufacture Housing Institute
63. Microsoft
64. Minority Business Roundtable
65. Mortgage Bankers Association
67. National Apartment Association
68. National Association of Counties
69. National Association of Chain Drug Stores
70. National Association of Electrical Distributors
71. National Association of Federal Credit Unions
72. National Association of Home Builders
73. National Association of Industrial and Office Properties
74. National Association of Manufacturers
75. National Association of Plumbing, Heating and Cooling Contractors
76. National Association of Real Estate Investment Managers
77. National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts
78. National Association of Realtors
79. National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors
80. National Automobile Dealers Association
81. National Black Church Initiative
82. National Education Association
83. National Electrical Contractors Association
84. National Federation of Independent Business
85. National League of Cities
86. National Lumber and Building Materials Dealers Association
87. National Multi Housing Council
88. National Restaurant Association
89. National Retail Federation
90. National Roofing Contractors Association
91. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association
92. NPES - The Association of Suppliers of Printing, Publishing and Converting Technologies
93. Moran Industries
94. Printing Industries of America
95. Real Estate Roundtable
96. Reinsurance Association of America
97. Retail Industry Leaders Association
98. Savings Coalition
99. Securities Industry & Financial Markets Association
100. Semiconductor Industry Association
101. Software & Information Industry Association
102. Technet
103. US Chamber of Commerce
104. US Telecom
105. Verizon
106. Whirlpool